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Fascism - Does it exist today?

PDenoli 2010/05/12 16:30:47
People toss the word "fascist" around all the time. I think we're so numb we don't recognize the difference when we actually see it. George Orwell wrote in 1944 that "the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless ... almost any English person would accept ‘bully’ as a synonym for ‘Fascist’"

Let's be clear - Fascists believe:
Liberal democracy must be circumvented or eliminated to achieve positive social change.
Class identity is important; class conflict is a valid means of motivating change.
Class identity is trans-national; national identity must be conformed or be destroyed
There should be a super-political class placed in ultimate control of society and industry.
The masses can be controlled by focusing them on their humiliation or victimhood.
The public can be motivated by compensatory cults of unity, including collaboration between these self-segregating social groups.
Their political goals must be achieved by any means, abandoning representative government, and leveraging non-democratic means whenever necessary
It is permissible to pursue or permit violence and to foment the fear of violence from others in order to justify and to enforce social controls.
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  • Daveman 2010/06/17 20:57:24 (edited)
    Daveman
    +2
    "Fascism has taken up an attitude of complete opposition to the doctrines of Liberalism, both in the political field and in the field of economics". --Benito Mussolini

    To be clear, he means economic liberalism and political liberalism. Today that is called classical liberalism and is almost the opposite of what passes as "liberalism" in America today. As a true (classical) liberal said "The idea that political freedom can be preserved in the absence of economic freedom, and vice versa, is an illusion. Political freedom is the corollary of economic freedom." Ludwig von Mises

    "If the nineteenth century was the century of individualism [classical liberalism signified individualism] it may be expected that [the 20th century] will be the century of collectivism, and hence the century of the State." Benito Mussollini

    Its equally evil and very similar to any other collectivist/statist system.

    "The socialist movement takes great pains to circulate frequently new labels for its ideally constructed state. Each worn-out label is replaced by another which raises hopes of an ultimate solution of the insoluble basic problem of Socialism—until it becomes obvious that nothing has been changed but the name. The most recent slogan is "State Capitalism."[Fascism] It is not commonly realized that th...









    "Fascism has taken up an attitude of complete opposition to the doctrines of Liberalism, both in the political field and in the field of economics". --Benito Mussolini

    To be clear, he means economic liberalism and political liberalism. Today that is called classical liberalism and is almost the opposite of what passes as "liberalism" in America today. As a true (classical) liberal said "The idea that political freedom can be preserved in the absence of economic freedom, and vice versa, is an illusion. Political freedom is the corollary of economic freedom." Ludwig von Mises

    "If the nineteenth century was the century of individualism [classical liberalism signified individualism] it may be expected that [the 20th century] will be the century of collectivism, and hence the century of the State." Benito Mussollini

    Its equally evil and very similar to any other collectivist/statist system.

    "The socialist movement takes great pains to circulate frequently new labels for its ideally constructed state. Each worn-out label is replaced by another which raises hopes of an ultimate solution of the insoluble basic problem of Socialism—until it becomes obvious that nothing has been changed but the name. The most recent slogan is "State Capitalism."[Fascism] It is not commonly realized that this covers nothing more than what used to be called Planned Economy and State Socialism, and that State Capitalism, Planned Economy, and State Socialism diverge only in non-essentials from the "classic" ideal of egalitarian Socialism.” - Ludwig von Mises


    So yes, its growing in America very fast. Its been here but just growing closer today.

    American Roots of Fascism
    http://www.sodahead.com/unite...

    The economics of Fascism
    http://www.sodahead.com/unite...
    http://www.econlib.org/librar...
    (more)

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  • realist 2012/11/12 01:26:51 (edited)
    realist
    Firstly im unsure in Fascism really exists outside of small areas in ethnic countries (India I 'think' has a fascist movement). Communism is more common. That said I honest think the world is almost ready for a change and Fascism might be the answer.

    Fascism has had a bad run because of the time period in which it was introduced.

    The real benefits in Fascism is;

    1. People are identified by their Nation NOT their race. Since race should not be of
    concern, if people in the Nation continue to distance themselves from the population
    based on race THEY are the people causing the problem.

    2. ALL people must benefit a nation in some way.

    3. A nation must benefit ALL people in some way.

    4. A nation is a business, it is not an ecosystem of ideologies.

    5. People are free to leave if they don't like it, Fascism is not Communism.

    6. Fascism looks at benefits in the now AND in the future, it focuses on a Nation being
    sustainable.

    For fascism to work it's initiation must be sound; on best merits a Government which introduces it should allow the nation to vote on a committee (same as how electoral college is nominated now) which would run the nation for the next 10-15-20 years (with their own respective leader)...I personally would be in preference of more then less. By ...

    Firstly im unsure in Fascism really exists outside of small areas in ethnic countries (India I 'think' has a fascist movement). Communism is more common. That said I honest think the world is almost ready for a change and Fascism might be the answer.

    Fascism has had a bad run because of the time period in which it was introduced.

    The real benefits in Fascism is;

    1. People are identified by their Nation NOT their race. Since race should not be of
    concern, if people in the Nation continue to distance themselves from the population
    based on race THEY are the people causing the problem.

    2. ALL people must benefit a nation in some way.

    3. A nation must benefit ALL people in some way.

    4. A nation is a business, it is not an ecosystem of ideologies.

    5. People are free to leave if they don't like it, Fascism is not Communism.

    6. Fascism looks at benefits in the now AND in the future, it focuses on a Nation being
    sustainable.

    For fascism to work it's initiation must be sound; on best merits a Government which introduces it should allow the nation to vote on a committee (same as how electoral college is nominated now) which would run the nation for the next 10-15-20 years (with their own respective leader)...I personally would be in preference of more then less. By the end of that term the benefits of fascism would become clear and a true national identity would be refined.

    The current form of politics in America is regressive in as many areas as it is progressive, as in Australia; when asked what an 'American' is, it is becoming harder and harder to describe while it is becoming easier to describe what a 'Latino' is or an 'African' or 'Caucasian' is in these societies....these are not good signs of things to come.
    (more)
  • Daveman 2010/06/17 20:57:24 (edited)
    Daveman
    +2
    "Fascism has taken up an attitude of complete opposition to the doctrines of Liberalism, both in the political field and in the field of economics". --Benito Mussolini

    To be clear, he means economic liberalism and political liberalism. Today that is called classical liberalism and is almost the opposite of what passes as "liberalism" in America today. As a true (classical) liberal said "The idea that political freedom can be preserved in the absence of economic freedom, and vice versa, is an illusion. Political freedom is the corollary of economic freedom." Ludwig von Mises

    "If the nineteenth century was the century of individualism [classical liberalism signified individualism] it may be expected that [the 20th century] will be the century of collectivism, and hence the century of the State." Benito Mussollini

    Its equally evil and very similar to any other collectivist/statist system.

    "The socialist movement takes great pains to circulate frequently new labels for its ideally constructed state. Each worn-out label is replaced by another which raises hopes of an ultimate solution of the insoluble basic problem of Socialism—until it becomes obvious that nothing has been changed but the name. The most recent slogan is "State Capitalism."[Fascism] It is not commonly realized that th...









    "Fascism has taken up an attitude of complete opposition to the doctrines of Liberalism, both in the political field and in the field of economics". --Benito Mussolini

    To be clear, he means economic liberalism and political liberalism. Today that is called classical liberalism and is almost the opposite of what passes as "liberalism" in America today. As a true (classical) liberal said "The idea that political freedom can be preserved in the absence of economic freedom, and vice versa, is an illusion. Political freedom is the corollary of economic freedom." Ludwig von Mises

    "If the nineteenth century was the century of individualism [classical liberalism signified individualism] it may be expected that [the 20th century] will be the century of collectivism, and hence the century of the State." Benito Mussollini

    Its equally evil and very similar to any other collectivist/statist system.

    "The socialist movement takes great pains to circulate frequently new labels for its ideally constructed state. Each worn-out label is replaced by another which raises hopes of an ultimate solution of the insoluble basic problem of Socialism—until it becomes obvious that nothing has been changed but the name. The most recent slogan is "State Capitalism."[Fascism] It is not commonly realized that this covers nothing more than what used to be called Planned Economy and State Socialism, and that State Capitalism, Planned Economy, and State Socialism diverge only in non-essentials from the "classic" ideal of egalitarian Socialism.” - Ludwig von Mises


    So yes, its growing in America very fast. Its been here but just growing closer today.

    American Roots of Fascism
    http://www.sodahead.com/unite...

    The economics of Fascism
    http://www.sodahead.com/unite...
    http://www.econlib.org/librar...
    (more)
  • PDenoli Daveman 2010/06/17 21:04:33
    PDenoli
    +1
    Well said.
  • Alex 2010/05/21 21:07:31
    Alex
    You are describing Boris Yeltsin in 1993. I don't think many historians would call him a fascist.
  • PDenoli Alex 2010/05/21 21:21:03
    PDenoli
    +1
    Hmmm. That's interesting. I'll have to think about that. It may be true. It would certainly explain the force with which he was ejected from leadership. But it wouldn't explain the genuine support that Putin seems to enjoy in the same/similar position of centralized power.

    In my exchange with Zuggi (below) we got into the differences between socialism, communism, and fascism. In terms of theory basics, there appear to be relatively few differences. Mostly nuances that manifest in differences without distinction. While communism and fascism are often touted as 'opposites', I maintain that anarchism is closer to being a polar opposite of fascism than communism. At best, Communism is a different flavor of something... similar to fascism.

    Please keep in mind that *I* am not professing to describe anyone. I'm simply stating what makes something fascist. If we can divorce the notion of fascism from jack boots and swastikas (admittedly difficult), it is simply a political system and not inherently evil. It may be the case that it inevitably leads to evil, but that's a different discussion.

    I'm not sure that any of this MEANS anything. I just wanted to set down what is meant when someone cries "fascist"! It's been misused so much, I'm concerned we wouldn't recognize it if we saw it... unless it once again appeared with the jackboots and swastikas... which I seriously doubt.
  • Alex PDenoli 2010/05/21 21:39:08
    Alex
    Actually, Yeltsin stayed in power till late 1999, when he resigned.

    I think an important difference between fascism and communism is nationalism and racism. While communists were expecting a world revolution brought about by the class struggle of proletariat, white and black alike, fascists were proclaiming superiority of one race. I think you points about trans-national ideology don't apply to fascism.
  • PDenoli Alex 2010/05/21 21:44:19
    PDenoli
    As for Yeltsin I'll rely on wikipedia: " He left office widely unpopular with the Russian population as an ineffectual and ailing autocrat. By some estimates, his approval ratings when leaving office were two percent. Just hours before the first day of 2000, Yeltsin made a surprise announcement of his resignation, leaving the presidency in the hands of Vladimir Putin."

    I'll append this by including that there is reasonable speculation that his "surprise announcement" was more than subtly coerced, and further aided by his extremely low level of support. This is what I meant by ejected forcefully... extreme unpopularity and possible threats of actual force.
  • PDenoli Alex 2010/05/21 21:45:07 (edited)
    PDenoli
    As for the nature of fascism, what you say is very true of Nazism, but it is not true for all forms of fascism... of which there are dozens of non-Nazi examples.

    If I'm splitting hairs, I apologize. My intent is to examine the breadth of what this is and not re-hash the Nazi examples which are beyond rational analysis due to history, depravity, etc.
  • Blix 2010/05/13 10:45:07 (edited)
    Blix
    It pits the business man against the farmers, races against each other, religions too... all are fodder for sowing strife and reaping control as arbiter. pdenoli



    Sounds remarkably like the States nowadays. Da? Actually its been this way for years.
  • PDenoli Blix 2010/05/13 12:22:30
    PDenoli
    Nothing happens overnight... except perhaps the revelation or discovery of what is happening.
  • PDenoli Blix 2010/05/21 21:50:03
    PDenoli
    They say there's nothing new under the sun.

    Personally, I think you see some elements of all forms of government in almost any form of government. A dictatorship is not without some vestiges of democracy. A democracy is not without some vestiges of theocracy.... and so on.

    The interesting question to me is how much of what, and toward what meaningful consequences it leaning?
  • Zuggi 2010/05/12 16:45:03
    Zuggi
    Class identity is trans-national; national identity must be conformed or be destroyed

    I think you've got that backwards.
  • PDenoli Zuggi 2010/05/12 20:15:21
    PDenoli
    Okay, but... I don't think so. How do you mean?
  • Zuggi PDenoli 2010/05/12 22:26:12
    Zuggi
    Fascism is intensely nationalist; it's the opposite of Communism in that regard.
  • PDenoli Zuggi 2010/05/13 02:43:28
    PDenoli
    Who said anything about communism? While they fought bitterly in WWII, fascism is not the opposite of communism. They are very similar in many ways. If you're looking for an opposite, anarchy would be a better choice. It represents a lack of control whereas both communism and fascism crave absolute control and authority.

    Calling fascism "nationalistic" misses the point. It would be most accurate to say fascism cares more for the control of the nation than for the welfare of the nation, itself. But above all else, it cares about the means of stratifying, and pitting classes of people against each other as a way to foment control. Specifically control of industry and societal norms. Imagine the things an original 70's punker might rail against. It wasn't about love or hate of country. It was about resisting the need to conform socially and to seek the acceptable economic norms.

    Yes, the levers of power used by communism is quite similar. However, while the the good little Marxist is content to pit the bourgeoisie and proletariat against each other, Fascism is broader. Fascism is an equal-opportunity manipulator. It pits the business man against the farmers, races against each other, religions too... all are fodder for sowing strife and reaping control as arbiter.

    Sure,...

    Who said anything about communism? While they fought bitterly in WWII, fascism is not the opposite of communism. They are very similar in many ways. If you're looking for an opposite, anarchy would be a better choice. It represents a lack of control whereas both communism and fascism crave absolute control and authority.

    Calling fascism "nationalistic" misses the point. It would be most accurate to say fascism cares more for the control of the nation than for the welfare of the nation, itself. But above all else, it cares about the means of stratifying, and pitting classes of people against each other as a way to foment control. Specifically control of industry and societal norms. Imagine the things an original 70's punker might rail against. It wasn't about love or hate of country. It was about resisting the need to conform socially and to seek the acceptable economic norms.

    Yes, the levers of power used by communism is quite similar. However, while the the good little Marxist is content to pit the bourgeoisie and proletariat against each other, Fascism is broader. Fascism is an equal-opportunity manipulator. It pits the business man against the farmers, races against each other, religions too... all are fodder for sowing strife and reaping control as arbiter.

    Sure, Nazism is the go-to exemplar of a fascist state, but understand that it was a rather peculiar and perverse form of fascism and not the only variety to exist. At one time or another, fascism has taken hold from Africa to China and across the Middle East - not just Europe. People make the mistake of thinking fascism and Nazism are completely equivalent. Not at all. This is why I carefully listed some of the most critical criteria that defines fascism.

    I find it personally amusing that there are people in the world who profess to hate fascism, and yet they practice it in the name of something they believe to be socialism. I don't think they are hypocrites... just ignorant. And fascist. And I say that because of the way they slice and dice society, pit groups against each other, claim victim-hood as a rationale for controlling societal norms and for controlling industry. Where's the notion of a "worker" when the dominant factions aren't doing any real work? That's the big tip-off that it ain't communism we're talking about.
    (more)
  • Zuggi PDenoli 2010/05/13 02:54:42
    Zuggi
    +1
    I was speaking on that one element of fascism. Fascism has always been "Nation first, rah rah rah!" Communism is all about "Workers of the world, unite!" In that element they are opposites.

    I find it personally amusing when people attempt to use reducto ad hitlerum.
  • PDenoli Zuggi 2010/05/13 03:07:42 (edited)
    PDenoli
    History doesn't consistently show fascism as being nation-rah-rah. It does show trans-national affiliation rah-rah. Again, I think there is some confusion between fascism writ large and Nazism as a particular instance.

    It can be amusing when someone injects hitler into a discussion where there was no prior mention of hitler. Of course, I suppose I'll have to allow you to do so, since this is a discussion of fascism. What did you want to say about hitler?
  • bixby Zuggi 2010/07/25 03:05:38
    bixby
    +3
    "The Marxist says, if you be not my brother, I will bash your skull in. Our motto shall be, if you be not a German, I will bash your skull in." Hitler, quoted in "Hitler: A Study in Tyranny," by Alan Bullock.

    You are so right. Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, Pinochet, etc., were all extreme nationalists. They got their support from the large landowners and the industrialists. In return for that support, the dictators crushed the trade unionists and the right to strike, and corporate taxes were lowered.
  • PDenoli bixby 2010/07/26 15:06:44
    PDenoli
    While fascism can be nationalistic, it's neither prerequisite nor a comprehensive expression of their philosophy.
  • bixby PDenoli 2010/07/26 15:36:30
    bixby
    +3
    Most fascist regimes (Mussolini, Hitler, Franco, Pinochet, etc.) have the following characteristics: extreme nationalism; fanatical patriotism; they are for class collaboration, not class warfare as socialists and commies are; chauvinistic..."woman, stay home, cook, clean, have babies"; racist; often play footsie with the church hierarchy; adored by the middle class and up for kicking red heinie; low corporate taxes.

    This is why National "Socialism" is not socialism, anymore than the People's Democratic Republic of North Korea is a republic.
  • PDenoli bixby 2010/07/26 15:54:36
    PDenoli
    Fascism vs National Socialism: distinction without a difference.

    Some of your examples don't even support your claims, so I'll go back to the definition of fascism. Fascists believe:

    1) Liberal democracy must be circumvented or eliminated to achieve positive social change.
    2) Class identity is important; class conflict is a valid means of motivating change.
    3) Class identity is trans-national; national identity must be conformed or be destroyed
    4) There should be a super-political class placed in ultimate control of society and industry.
    5) The masses can be controlled by focusing them on their humiliation or victimhood.
    6) The public can be motivated by compensatory cults of unity, including collaboration between these self-segregating social groups.
    7) Their political goals must be achieved by any means, abandoning representative government, and leveraging non-democratic means whenever necessary
    8) It is permissible to pursue or permit violence and to foment the fear of violence from others in order to justify and to enforce social controls.

    Before getting distracted by statements about "women having babies", perhaps it would be useful to stick with these core principles of fascism before asserting all fascists wear a swastika on their arm and rock a Charlie Chaplin mustache.
  • bixby PDenoli 2010/07/26 17:29:36
    bixby
    "To be sure, there lurked the terror of the Gestapo and the fear of the concentration camp for those who got out of line or who had been Communists or SOCIALIST or TOO LIBERAL or too pacifist, or who were Jews." - Wm. L. Shirer, describing the Germany he first saw in 1934, from THE RISE AND FALL OF THE THIRD REICH, p. 231.

    "For him (Hitler) the Nazi socialist slogans had been merely propaganda, means of winning over the masses on his way to power. Now that he had the power, he was uninterested in them." Shirer, p. 205.

    I would be grateful if you could cite the source of your eight points. I know of several other list that would not agree with a number of the things you have listed.
  • PDenoli bixby 2010/07/26 17:47:00
    PDenoli
    I'm lazy - I can't do all of the work for you. Please pick one of the points you think is wrong and I'll do your research on that one point for you.

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